Pope Francis calls for 'wisdom' ahead of Trump's Jerusalem speech

08 December, 2017, 01:49 | Author: Evan Mason
  • Pope Francis said holding talks between differing religions was important

"Jerusalem is a unique city, sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims, who venerate the Holy Sites of their respective religions there, and it has a special vocation to peace", the Pope continued in his address Wednesday.

US President Donald Trump will deliver his speech, expecting the US president to "recognize the reality" that Jerusalem has always been the capital of Israel and to declare the move to the US diplomatic mission from Tel Aviv and which for decades remained a reason of contention between Israelis and Palestinians.

Weighing in on the controversial decision, the pontiff made a "heartfelt appeal" to all nations to "respect [Jerusalem's] status quo, in conformity with the pertinent United Nations resolutions", as cited by Vatican Radio.

The Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, has said that he fears for Jerusalem and its people following President Trump's decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

"We ask you, Mr President, to help us all walk toward more love and a definitive peace, which can not be reached without Jerusalem being for all", they said.

Palestinians insist there is no hope of a peace agreement unless they can use the east of the city as their capital, but the Israelis claim the whole city as their own.

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The status of the city remains disputed.

A number of world leaders have warned against moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Pope Francis says the Roman Catholic Church might consider adopting a more realistic and gentle adaption of the "lead us not into temptation" lyric of the "Our Father" prayer.

Saudi Arabia's King Salman warned his close ally that moving the USA embassy was a "dangerous step" that could rile Muslims around the world.

Before the audience, Pope Francis met with religious leaders from Palestine attending a meeting sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue.

Secretary General António Guterres and Pope Francis both expressed alarm that the announcement would provoke new tensions in the Holy City, which is revered by Jews, Christians and Muslims.

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